MAY 16, 1931 - JUNE 24, 2020 On Wednesday, June 24, 2020, Eugene "Gene" Thornton, 89, died unexpectedly and went home to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Graveside funeral services will be held at 11:00 am on Monday, June 29, 2020 at Lakeview Memorial Park with Rev. David Surrett officiating. All Covid-19 Protocols and Guidelines will apply at the service. Friends and family may visit Forbis and Dick North Elm Street Funeral Home to view and sign the guestbook on Sunday, June 28 from 9:30 am to 3:00 pm. Gene was born in Sampson County, NC to the late Henry Felix Thornton and Clyde Haney Thornton. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brothers John Thornton, Paul Haney, Clayton Haney, Lonnie Thornton, Charlie Thornton, Jerry Thornton, Norwood Thornton and sisters Emma Williams, Lela Ezzell, Evelyn Compton and Janie Haney (infant). He is survived by his loving family including his wife of 67 years, Bettie T. Thornton, daughter Kathy T. McConnell (Edward), son Jeffery K. Thornton (Patricia) and sisters Ellen Bearden, Virginia Cosgrove, Mildred Wilson (Walt), Betty Whaley (Tony) and numerous nieces and nephews. Gene was retired from Lorillard Tobacco Co., a US Air Force Veteran, a member of the American Legion Cone Post 386 and a member of Emmanuel Wesleyan Church. He considered himself a "shade-tree" mechanic and was well known by his circle of friends for his ability to diagnose problems and work on just about any make of older model car. He enjoyed spending time with his family and close friends, helping other people, attending monthly meals with other Lorillard retirees, The Friends and Neighbors Senior Meeting and working in the hot dog sales at the American Legion and Carraway Methodist Church. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to Emmanuel Wesleyan Church, 3233 Yanceyville St., Greensboro NC 27405 or American Legion Cone Post 386, 1206 American Legion St., Greensboro NC 27405.
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